Paris Menswear Shows Highlights – Autumn/Winter 2015

imageWe arrive in the final destination on our round up of the male Fashion weeks for Autumn/Winter 2015. Bonjour Paris and we start the proceedings off with a brand not short on that certain  Je ne said quoi, yes Louis Vuitton and what a way to start. Kim Jones just seems to be going from strength to strength during his tenure with the Luxury Power house. He drew his inspiration this season, on a personal hero, in the shape of British Designer Christopher Nemeth who was relatively unknown outside of Japan. He interpreted four of Nemeth’s signature prints and at the same time managed to work them expertly into the Vuitton aesthetic, that only he could have achieved to such a high level. Once again leaving everyone, a baited for next season to see what magic he may conjure.

imageNext up, onto a designer who left me agog with the beauty of his collection, Junya Watanabe, who based the look of his Autumn/Winter 2015 collection on the sub culture of the ‘sappers’ the nattily dressed gentlemen from the Congo. Think, those immaculately dressed dandies of 1930’s Harlem in their Sunday Best fit for Church and an audience with God himself. Nonetheless, this was no retro obsessed collection, this was modernity personified.

imageThen to Riccardo Tisci’s Givenchy, we saw a departure from the sweatshirts and Tees which have made the Fashion brand such a favourite of the likes of Professor Green through to Kanye West in recent years and a move towards the formal roots of the Parisian house. However, this was a dark and eerie at time unnerving presentation by Tisci and the Devil was literally in the detail.

Madison Kitsune

Madison Kitsune

Paul & Joe

Paul & Joe

Ami may not have the heritage of some of the other players on the Paris schedule but it nonetheless delivers and leaves you wanting to run backstage and put an order in with them there and then, not having to wait 6 or so months before it hits the stores and websites. It offers impeccably desirable clothes that you just want. Another French brand able to entice us with such wearable and interesting ranges is Carven offering up a more boxy and sculpted silhouette this season. Relative new comers are Maison Kitsune the duo of Masaya Kuroki and Gildas Loaec, think of this like a pseudoFrench Alban, where they leave you wanting literally every piece from the collection from suiting to Tote bag. The thing all these brands have in common is their comforting lack of avant garde, there is no danger you may need the lookbook just to know have to wear an outfit from these brands but you can rest assure you still know, you look the bis when wearing their wares. This is the same with Paul & Joe, this is not a tricksy brand, where from season to season you’re not quite sure what you might see or get from them. This is a true bastion of wearable apparel.

imageKris Van Assche for Dior Homme, seemed to run his show in reverse this season opting to start the presentation with formal attire in tuxedos in various forms then moving between smart and smart casual throughout. Mixing that juxtaposition of high formal then throwing in denim, a baseball cap, trainers or maybe even all three, just because he can.

imageNext we have the Luxury house of Luxury Houses, Hermes offering a Masterclass in the modern male’s wardrobe and what it SHOULD contain for every possible eventuality, whether that be a business meeting or what to wear for that all important down time, Veronique Nichanian had it covered to a tee, T-shirt that is.

imageLike Hermes, Alber Elbaz over at Lanvin did his take on what a the contemporary man needs for his functional wardrobe. He divided it into uniform sections which included, pinstripes, tweeds in grey, country plaids, army coats and military jackets.

imagePenultimately, we have Sir Paul Smith flying the flag for British Sartorialism on the continent. Like so many brands this season he too has adopted the maxim of Orange is the new Black or maybe he’s been watching too much Netflix, either way we have seen everyone from Christopher Raeburn to Missoni, Moschino and Vivienne Westwood all take on the sunshine hue. Smith looked back to move forward this season and saught his design team to plunder his archive of decades of hoarding.

Finally we have Umit Benan who like Pablo Copolla for Bally seems to have been inspired by the films of Wes Anderson. Rather than the The Royal Tenenbaums, Benan appears to have emmerised himself in ‘The Life aquatic’ as whether is was fishing rods or bucket hats his models possessed some element of fishing paraphernalia. But at no time did Umit collection veer to the realms of silliness or gimmick.



Homme Mode à Paris – Paris Menswear Show Review AW14

Bonjour my petit pois ! We have the last of out previews from the European Style Capitals for this season, well for next season but let’s not confuse matters. This time as though it needed an introduction, of course, the city of lurve, Paris.

First, for our delectation is one of the oldest Fashion Houses and hottest tickets for all Paris Menswear Shows, Louis Vuitton, under the style direction of  uber talented Brit Kim Jones. Jones has shown he’s not only come along way since his collaborations as a young Designer with the like of TOPMAN and sports brand Umbro, but has finely tuned his talents to produce some of the most sublime collections in recent years from the house of Vuitton. For Autumn/Winter 14 the trend driven show wasn’t as obviously as past seasons, opting for letting the Clothes do the talking, but was loosely inspired by Kim’s trip to the Atacama Desert of South America.

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

On to one of the busiest men of the Paris Men’s shows Kris Van Assche, with the first of his two presentations of the week, up first is his own signature collection. Here we shown a totally wearable and rather commercial range from Van Assche, offering us colour, patterns in herringbone and eye catching dizzy dots.

Kris Van Assche

Kris Van Assche

Then with a hop, skip and literal jump over to the second of Monsieur Van Assche’s collections, told you he was busy, in Dior Homme. Where if we were in any doubt as to his Dotty tendencies, they were confirmed here. We were offered them in Suits, shirts, shoes, ties, honestly you name it, it was covered in dots, but please don’t be put off, he managed to pull this off, to quote Mr Kenny Everett, it was all done in the best possible taste !

Dior Homme

Dior Homme

Now then, Ami’s, Alexandre Mattiussi continues his assault on being the favourite label of choice among the style press and it isn’t surprising as to why. He’s proving to be a Jedi Master in the art of producing collections that have that simply, unassuming, stylish charm about them, but all the time screaming, your life won’t be complete without me in it !



Into the final straights, we have a name who over the past couple of seasons has been making a lot of the right noises while showing in Milan, but for this season has made the move to Paris. Turkish born, Umit Benan, each season, selects a character to base his collection around. In the past, we have seen such inspiration as the taxi drivers of his home Capital Istanbul, or Vintage Rockers or even Investment Banker. However, this season we looked to, Jackie Robinson, who? The first African Amercian Baseball Star. So the presentation had a very 1940’s feel to it from the political references to the lack of freedom Robinson had to put up way at this time.

Umit Benan

Umit Benan

And so to the final of our designers, we started with a Brit designing for a French Fashion house and we finish with a British Designer showing in Paris. No less then Sir Paul Smith,  who relaxed his silhouettes this season and drew inspiration for his collection from one could say, another iconic figure, in Jim Morrison. So no surprises when I tell you there was a distinct ROCK feeling to Smith’s show.

Paul Smith

Paul Smith

No Mistletoe required – Getting Office Party Attire Spot on

250x250_CMTM_BannerThis Friday night is, that night of the year, some see it as the most dreaded night on the calendar, whilst others count the days down from last years one. Yes, if you work in an Office environment the likelihood is you’ll  be heading off to your annual office party. Making an impact at this event is all too important, be too gregarious and your seen as not being professional. Staying quite and keeping yourself to yourself, your seen as being standoffish and not a leader of people. Plus not attending is not an option as then your seen as. not a committed member of staff, who sees himself as better then the rest and you can kiss goodbye to that promotion or pay rise.

If you feel you need a little more advise to avoid the minefield that is the Office Christmas Party take a look at this link from last year when we covered the do’s & don’ts etiquette of this nightmarish event.

Now to ensure you look your best for the big bash, we’ve selected  an outfit to cover each scenario that could possibly cover the Partay, we really are too good to you guys.

The casual Office event

So it might be a meal, drinks down the pub but essential quite an informal setting, where you don’t wanna rock up looking like you’ve made a real effort and overdressed for the occasion.

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This is a winning choice from Barbour, as it shows your entering into the spirit of the Yuletide without going all out Christmas Jumper extravaganza.
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I know I’ve said this before but its an absolute staple, the Black Shirt, this one from Marks & Spencer, is a great all rounder. If the Christmas do takes a turn and you wanna take it onto a club or somewhere a little more upmarket you can whip the jumper off and it gives a completely different look to your outfit without having to go home and change. Plus if  you pair this with.
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A pair of chinos, my advise is keep the look simple you don’t wanna look like one of Santa’s lil helpers in your fair isle knit and red or green chinos so stay traditional. These are a great example from Ben Sherman and the reason for Chinos over jeans is simple, it gives you more options. Alot of establishments, particularly at this time of year aren’t welcoming of lads wearing jeans so do yourself a favour and make sure your night doesn’t come to and abrupt and early end.
Screen Shot 2013-12-10 at 20.43.26Finish this look off with the highly versatile Finton from Grenson,  these lil lovelies can pretty much be worn with anything, they will see you through so many different occasions over the years. Not only timeless, they can be dressed up or down and still look great.

The Semi-casual event

Now this is when your boss is flashing the cash and has hired a venue for the Annual shindig, whether it be hotel, hall or even if its not been such a great year, pushed all the desks and chairs to the walls to make a dance floor and some room for Sharon from accounts Boyfriend Mark to show what he’s worth on the decks.

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This is a great look that sends out all the right messages, from yeah, I’ve made just the right amount of a effort, to Ohh yes I know how to put an outfit together effortlessly. This herringbone jacket and waistcoat combo can be bought as separates but also include a pair of trousers all from NEXT.

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These are a great pair of jeans from Oliver Spencer, Comfortable fit on the waist, front and back rise and a regular fit on the leg Dark Indigo Denim plus great value for money and will look great with this jacket and waistcoat.

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I’ve gone for a Chambray Oxford style shirt from Joules, rather then a white shirt as this can sometimes look too formal and you can easily smarten this look up with a navy tie and a pocket square. Plus it goes really well with the grey herringbone.

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Once again I’ve kept the outfit simple and finished it off with a classic pair of shoes, this time with Brogues from Oliver Sweeney. You want to keep things simple so there’s less for you to worry about and if you know you look good this will help with your confidence on the night. This look strikes a real balance and shows that you know what you’re doing.


The Formal event

So here you have it the final in the options for the Christmas Party looks to impress. The formal event, this is often when you have to attend a ball style function. Now once again you need to strike a balance of looking good, looking confident and standing out form the crowd for all the right reasons.

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Now this is a tuxedo that ticks all of those boxes from Banana Republic, you’re making a statement by going Navy rather then traditional black but at the same time looking totally dapper.

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You’ve made your statement with the Navy tux so you need to keep the rest of the look classic and sober. This is a brilliant dress shirt from the French brand Ami, which does does that, understated yet chic.

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Its all in the detail and this classic with a twist Black bow tie from TOPMAN finishes of this look perfectly, its just a little smaller then the traditional bow ties.

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These are a great dress shoes from Ted Baker and aren’t too traditional so you can easily wear these on other occasions with jeans.

So whatever your Christmas party follow these tips and it should hold you in fine fettle so you can hold your head high come Monday Morning.


Paris Menswear Shows Autumn/Winter 2013

Ami Menswear AW13

Carven Menswear AW13

After we bid a fond Arrivedercci to Milano, its Paris, the city of love’s turn to show us its wares. Carven, was first off and also a first for them to host a Menswear Catwalk Show, it blended contemporary office wear with vintage ski attire, perfect for the weather at the moment. The collection offered beautiful tailoring and everything a modern man could possible yearn from his wardrobe. However, I’m really not sure the trouser length of just below the knee will catch on, them poor models’ll catch their death !

Louis Vuitton Menswear AW13

Louis Vuitton Menswear AW13

Over to Louis Vuitton next, where the Men’s Style Director Kim Jones transported us to the Himalayas offering us all sorts of animal prints and pelts. British Art duo Dinos and Jake Chapman, one of Jones’s Favourite artists,  worked with him on a number of motifs across the collection, including their “Garden in Hell” which appeared on tuxedos, luggage and pyjamas. What more could a well travelled gentleman ask for ?

Maison Martin Margiela Menswear AW13

Maison Martin Margiela Menswear AW13

Maison Martin Margiela, was the next port of call and offered a brilliantly cast show showcasing gentlemen full of gallic charm and character. Although I love the wearability, usually, of this brand, sometimes I find it a little lost on me and I’m sure I’m not solo on this. Why ruin a great double breasted suit by making it into a jumpsuit or trash loads of vintage biker jackets to make a cape, which wouldn’t have been out of place on a horror film villain ? But on the whole, I still love what Martin does in his Maison.

Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy Menswear AW13

Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy Menswear AW13

As Christopher Kane looked to his dark side in the form of Franenstein’s Monster for his Autumn 2013 collection, now it was the turn of Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy. The candles laid out around the catwalk gave a seance feel to the proceeding and one hoped  this wasn’t an omen for the range. Not at all in fact Tisci, interpreted, in a rather gothic fashion, the images of American artist Robert Mapplethorpe using monochrome tones. Plus, loved the styling tip of tying your jacket around your waist, bring it on !

Ami by Alexandre Mattuisuu

Ami by Alexandre Mattiussi Menswear AW13

Ami is quickly establishing itself as a label of choice for those in the know and its really not difficult to see why the label designed by Alexandre Mattiussi is doing so well. Its success, like main key brand of the moment in its ease, easy to wear, easy to put together, easy to outfit build which in turn makes your life easier. The show’s set was staged to be the morning’s commuter train, where sharp dressed chaps made their way to the grind.

And to, what has to be the most anticipated event for seasons, the last show of the schedule, an unmistakable Parisian Fashion house with a new name, kinda, with a new designer, kind of…..Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane. His first menswear show, well his second as he was at the house for a short time back in 2000, but now he’s back and in a big way and….. Well, and not a great deal, nothing we hadn’t seen before and nothing you couldn’t pick up elsewhere for a fraction of the price. I want to leave it there as I believe Hedi Slimane is a great talent and look forward to seeing what he produces for next season, as we have to remember this is the man who caused literally a revolution in mens clothing, in what we wear and how we wore it, back at Dior Homme.